I have gratitude for other people’s blood after getting diagnosed with MDS in November 2018. I received at least 50 units of blood and about the same amount of platelets until I got a bone marrow transplant in May 2019.
I never liked the sight of blood and I hated needles as a child. But I am getting used to getting poked frequently to give blood for labs or to receive doses of red blood or platelets. Since I was diagnosed with high risk myelodisplastic syndrome (two months ago) I have gotten 14 pints of blood and 12 pints of platelets so far.
At some point, my body reached a point where I am running totally on other people’s blood. That is keeping me alive, until such time that my body hopefully starts making its own blood again. And all along, from the first pint, I’ve been thinking about the blood and the people it comes from.
It seems to me they must be thinking positive and hopeful thoughts wanting their blood to help those who may need it. Beyond that, I think about the fact that they may be of any age, of any nationality, political or religious affiliation. They may be from any walk of life, and therefore I am more connected with the oneness of the universe by these people sharing their life blood with me. So much like one candle lighting another.
I also see the blood and platelets are pleased to enter my body as they have short shelf life. I give them life as much as they do to me. The first transfusion brought me warmth. I could feel my toes and fingers warm up and I had a general sense of comfort. Others have been quite subdued and some have been most energizing.
I did have an allergic reaction to a recent infusion of platelets (Jan 2019). For some reason, that batch wasn’t as welcome in my body as all the rest. Overall I feel immense gratitude to those who have given blood. It is a precious gift. I think of the phrase, “It’s in your blood”. I’ll take all the positive and hopeful thoughts that come with it.